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The Principles of Green Building Design

Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009

by Thomas Rettenwender, M.A., Mag. Arch., LEED AP, Architect and Niklas Spitz
Art Fund Pavilion Design Competition
Classroom Design Competition
The Principles of Green Building Design
EcoLogic Design Lab
The Principles of Green Building Design
MPC INTD62 Spring Semester 2009
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These are historic times for the green building industry. Increased awareness of both global warming and the political implications of
dependence on fossil fuels has inspired a great demand for professionals skilled in technologies for conserving energy and in environmentally
responsible building design. The curriculum presented in these pages was developed by the EcoLogic Design Lab for Monterey Peninsula College
to offer students an introduction to the essential materials and methods in the green building design feld today, employing a balance of lecture
and audio/visual presentations, demonstrations of drawing and modeling techniques, hands-on design exercises, individual research assignments
and team projects.
Course participants are introduced to professionals in the feld enabling students to gain knowledge from a wide pool of experience and
approaches to the design issues of our day as well as exposure to the multitude of career paths that are possible in pursuit of more sustainable
construction methods, more responsible stewardship of our natural environment and more beautiful and harmonious architecture.

Thomas Rettenwender M.A., Mag. Arch., LEED AP, Architect

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Photo: The participants of the MPC Green Buidling
Design course, Spring 2009, tour the Carmel Middle
School Habitat with Tanja Roos in preparation for
thier upcoming assignment in green classroom design.
The Principles of Green Building Design Course
Monterey Peninsula College INTD 62, Spring Semester 2009
Taught and developed by Thomas Rettenwender and Niklas Spitz
Course Overview
o Design using Passive Techniques
o Integrating Green Technology Components
o Minimizing Impact of Designs on the Natural Environment
Course Outline
Course Introduction and Student Needs Assessment
History of Green Building
Sustainable Design Tools - Visualization
Site Ecology with Joe Rigney, Toyon Consulting
Water Systems with Brent Bucknum - Hyphae Design Laboratory
Natural Building with Marisha Farnsworth - Natural Building Design, Education and Advocacy
Passive Solar Design with Niklas Spitz - Ecologic Design Lab
Photovoltaics with Farrel Williams - Apex Solar
Carmel Middle School Habitat Field Trip with Tanja Roos - Carmel Middle School Habitat
Relocatable MPC Field Trip with Dustin Connor, MPC Construction Management
Green Building Materials with Libby Barnes - Architect, LEED AP
Green Roof Design with Cooper Scollan - Habitat Gardens
Landscape & Structure with Ken Principe - Landscape Architect
Building Metabolism with Brent Bucknum - Hyphae Design Laboratory
Individual Project Assistance and Review with Invited Guests
Final Review and Exhibition Adjudicated by Local Green Building Design Professionals
Field trip to Carmel Valley Middle School with Tanya Roos
Touring relocatable structures on the MPC campus
In-class discussion in the MPC computer lab room GA 103
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Green Building Design Visualization
The course encourages active participation in the design process as this is where the vision is communicated. There is no one design medium that
can fulfll all our needs. Following an introduction to a palette of different design visualization techniques, students are encouraged to fnd the tech-
nique that suits them and the project best.
History of Green Building Design
The course begins with a historical review of green building. Our ancestors lived off the resources that the land provided locally and built their
structures and villages out of natural materials. They lived in intimate harmony with nature and their villages respond to and map her movements.
The images below show the Anasazi village called Pueblo Bonito in Chaco Canyon, New Mexico, built in stages beginning around 919 AD.
A plan (far left) of New Bonito, a vastly
expanded, tiered arrangement contain-
ing up to 800 rooms reaching up to fve
stories high built around Old Bonito
during a remarkably short time of twen-
ty years, A.D. 1060-1080. A shadow
mapping of Old Bonito (center) show-
ing how the structures were built in re-
sponse to the passage of the sun across
the sky in different seasons of the year,
from Energy and Form by Ralph Knowles
and The Architecture of Pueblo Bonito by
Neil M. Judd. A photo of Pueblo Bonito
today (right) by Chuck Turner
Examples of stu-
dent work: Section
Sketch by MPC stu-
dents Bodhi Kvenild
and Mio Fukushima
(far left); study model
by Jim Farrow (cen-
ter); Sketch-up model
by Hanna Nishigu-
chi and Hugo Perez
showing the interior
of their Sustainable
Swing Space.
The Principles of Green Building Design
The Principles of Green Building Design Curriculum
- Develop the respect, develop the skill, develop the art !
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
Site Ecology
Water Systems
Water - often called the source of life - can be captured, stored, fltered, and reused. It provides a valuable resource to be celebrated in the process of
green building design. According to Art Ludwig in Create an Oasis out of Greywater, only about 6% of the water we use is for drinking. There is no need
to use potable water for irrigation or sewage. The Green Building Design course introduces methods of rainwater harvesting, grey water systems, and
living pools.
Green St., San Francisco (far
left) and Monterey Bay Shores
Ecoresort (center) grey- and
rain-water fow diagrams
by Brent Bucknum, Thomas
Rettenwender and Kirstin
Weeks; Villa Athena, Living
Pool and Landscape Design,
Athens, Greece (right) by
Thomas Rettenwender, Brent
Bucknum and Constantine

Reclaimed Wastewater
Minimal Sewage
Municipal Water Supply
le W
Natural Pools
Green Roofs
Water &
Bath &
Green Walls

Monterey Bay Shores
ApproachTo Water Management
The Principles of Green Building Design
A mapping (left) of the resident ecosystems, potential ecological analogs and potentially supported species
for the Google Campus in Mountainview, Ca. by Brent Bucknum, Thomas Rettenwender and Kirstin Weeks
with Rana Creek Habitat Restoration and William McDonough + Partners.
The green building design process begins with an intimate understanding of the site in
all its beauties and complexities. An ecological approach to design aims to integrate the
systems being introduced with the existing on-site ecological functions preformed by
mother nature. These ecological functions provide habitat, respond to the movements
of the sun, purify the air as well as catch, flter and store water. Designers can create fea-
tures in their buildings that mimic the functions of particular eco-systems. Rooftops can
support ecosystems modeled upon alpine meadows, living walls mimic forest canopies,
sloped roofs support species from the serpentine grasslands and water treatment roofs
can behave like brackish marshland. Species that thrive in natural ecosystems may also
utilize habitats created in man-made structures. Creating new habitat on structures in
urbanized areas is especially important to support bio-diversity and a healthy ecosystem.
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Natural Building
One-half of the worlds population lives or works in buildings constructed of earth. Strawbale construction is now gaining in popularity and many jurisdic-
tions in California have adopted the Strawbale Building Code. Green Building Design favors natural building for its local availability, ease of use, lack of toxic
ingredients, increased energy effciency, and aesthetic appeal.
Passive Solar Design
Passive solar design refers to the use of the suns energy for the heating and cooling of living spaces. The building itself or some element of it takes advan-
tage of natural energy characteristics in its materials to absorb and radiate the heat created by exposure to the sun. Passive systems are simple, have few
moving parts and no mechanical systems, require minimal maintenance and can decrease, or even eliminate, heating and cooling costs.
Solar fare photo by NASA (far left);
Sun chart showing seasonal solar
angles by the Coast Economic Lo-
calization Link (center) and Shading
diagram (right) showing solar angles
for Pueblo Bonito, Chaco Canyon,
New Mexico, at the equinox (top)
and summer solstice (bottom) from
Ralph Knowles, Energy and Form
The Sandbag Mu-
seum, Hesperia Ca.
(far left) designed
by Nader Khalili;
Slotover Strawbale
Residence, Bonny
Doon, Ca. designed
by Thomas Retten-
wender currently
under construction
(center); apply-
ing natural plaster
The Principles of Green Building Design
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
Green Building Materials
Before choosing building materials we can fnd out where the materials come from, how they have been harvested, what the ingredients are, whether
they are salvaged, reused or refurbished. We can research how they will perform over their lifetime of the building, whether they release harmful V.O.C.s
and how they can be processed or reused after disassembly.
Living Architecture
We take for granted that our environment - like our bodies - can metabolize nutrients and waste. Living Architecture focusses on these processes, in-
tegrating ecological functions into our buildings to catch, store, and flter water, purify air, and process other nutrients. Living Architecture also addresses
biophilia, the documented health benefts associated with being in touch with living systems in our built environment.
Green building materials:
(from left) insulation made
of recycled post-con-
sumer natural cellulose;
bamboo fooring; Forest
Stewardship Council logo
that certifes products
made from sustainably
harvested wood; Benjamin
Moore zero VOC Natura
The Google Living Architecture
Analysis (left) by Brent Buck-
num, Thomas Rettenwender
and Kirstin Weeks with Rana
Creek Habitat Restoration and
William McDonogh + Partners
setting out a patern language of
Living Architecture techniques;
Monterey Bay Shores Ecoresort
(right) designed by Thomas
Rettenwender and Brent Buck-
num with Rana Creek Habitat
Restoration and BSA Architects,
which restores the native fan-
drian dune formation and re-
vegetates over 90% of the site
providing extensive habitat for
native fora and fauna.
The Principles of Green Building Design
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In preparation for the fnal design project, students are introduced to the international design competition format - including site data, submission require-
ments and a submittal dead line. The focus of the exercise is to develop a design vision and be able to represent this vision with intuitive illustrational methods.
For beginning and intermediate designers the sketch model provides a quick, textured, and comprehensive method to visualize their ideas in three dimensions.
Students are encouraged to submit their work to the international
Art Fund Pavilion competition, to design a semi-permanent art exhi-
bition space to sit alongside a RIBA award-winning building by Marks
Barfeld Architects in London. The pavilion will provide additional ex-
hibition space for the new gallery and museum in Woking, Surrey, UK
known as The Lightbox.
The winning design will be built with funding by The Art Fund Prize,
the UKs largest single art prize of 100,000, and launched during the
London Design Festival 2009.
This competition is open to all and will be judged by an elite interna-
tional panel, including Wayne Hemingway and Kieran Long, Editor of
The Architects Journal. See
Preliminary Design Exercise: Week 1-4
Art Fund Pavilion
Project Presen-
tations, in room
GA103 at MPC,
March 3, 2009: mod-
els by Meridith Co-
chran (far left), Remi
Webster and Nancy
Lombard-Gay (left),
Hana Nishiguchi
Mio Fukushima presents her
Art Pavilion Tea House design
made exclusively out of recycled
materials from the Ocean Sushi
Restaurant in Monterey.
Nico Rivetti deconstructing
his tree house art pavilion.
Chelsea Frost Williams
presenting the grow-
ing bamboo exhibition
tent she designed with
Josh Koepke.
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
Michael Lapin pre-
senting the Art Fund
Pavilion Design he
did with Robert
Nelson and Paris
Vogelpohl. Michael
has been licensed
as a general build-
ing contractor for
the past twenty-nine
years and designed
and built his own
home, shop, and
decks in Carmel Val-
ley, Ca.
Art Fund Pavilion Design
by Mike Lapin, Robert Nelson,
and Paris Vogelpohl
This design complements
the RIBA award winning building
by Marks Barfeld Architects and
the shape of the Canal Court-
This student design team de-
cided to utilize oriented strand
board, polypropylene fber, radi-
ant heat, bamboo fooring, and
photovoltaic panels in the con-
struction of the tent. The ori-
ented strand board would be
obtained from a wood distribu-
tor who uses wood from well
managed forests.
This tent is environmentally
sound, can be built quickly, and
is an aesthetically pleasing place
to show artwork, enhancing
both the natural surroundings
and the existing building.
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
The Tree Column Pavilion is an exhibition gallery that carries the
look of a natural grove of trees at frst glance - upon further
inspection its reveals itself as a functioning art pavilion. The pavil-
ion extends no more than 25 in diameter and 12 in height. Visi-
tors can meander through the grove observing art suspended by
wires as if the pieces were magically suspended in air.
Peter Quintanilla is
an ISA certifed arborist,
specializing in the art and
science of pruning trees.
Originally from Los Angeles,
Peter has been living and
caring for trees on the
Monterey Peninsula since
2000. He hopes to combine
his interests in both trees
and architecture to help
build tree houses.
April Allard studied Ecology at Humboldt State University and is now
pursuing a career as a naturalist, native plant advocate, community
coordinator, and garden therapist in Coastal California.
Tree Columns: Recycled cardboard tubing comes in various lengths and diameters. These tubes are hollow,
lightweight, can be telescoped for ease of transport and easily broken down into separate components at
the end of the day. Hollow interiors allow for wiring between solar collectors and pavilion lighting.
Many fast growing timber bamboos can reach a diameter of 5 and a height of 35-50. These can be cut
down to appropriate heights, cured and placed within the synthetic forest to provide a natural green ambi-
Passive Solar Radiant Heating: Water can be heated during day through a passive water heater
system with backup supply from residual energy of solar collectors. This can be installed in fooring as
well as tree columns for comfortable forest temperatures.
Flooring: Elevated foor boards allow access to crawl space as well as space for underground wiring
and radiant heating. Floor surface made of leaf imprinted or shaped recycled rubber tiles. Tiling
allows for easy set up and break down. Rubber fooring absorbs noise and impacts and is also water
and slip resistant.
Tree Column Pavilion by April Allard & Peter Quintanilla
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
Eefje Theeuws presenting the Fish Scales Pavilion she
designed together with Noel McNamee. Visitors to the
exhibition pay an entry fee of one recycled-material
shingle that is pressed on site and added to the roof.
Fish Scales Pavilion by Noel McNamee and Eefje Theeuws
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
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Final Green Building Design Project Assignment:
The 2009 Open Architecture Challenge: Classroom
Photo: The fnal review of the student design
assignment in the MPC Art Gallery, June 3,
2009. The invited judges included Polly Os-
borne, Christoph Williams, Ken Principe, Lau-
ra Strohm and Sunshine Giesler (see Judges
pp. 25-26) who rated and awarded the proj-
ects in the following categories: Sustainabil-
ity, Innovation, Presentation. The Audience
Award was determined at the event by all
participating students and visitors
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
The Challenge: Students of the MPC Green Building Design Course
were given the parameters of the 2009 Open Architecture Challenge:
Classroom as the framework for their fnal Green Building Design class
assignment. The challenge was to design the classroom of the future for a
local school of their choosing.
Students presented their fnal designs in the MPC Art Gallery on
June 3, 2009. Their projects were critiqued and evaluated by invited pro-
fessionals in the following categories: Most Innovative, Most Sustainable,
Best Presentation, Audience Award.
Students were encouraged to develop a visionary approach to
the design of the classroom of the future and prepare materials to pres-
ent their design vision to a host of invited guests. In the process of sharing
their design expertise and submitting their designs to the contest, they will
become advocates for better classroom design in their communities and
possibly win the prize money of $55,000 for themselves and their chosen
school !
For more information about the 2009 Open Architecture Challenge:
Classroom go to:
Why Should Schools Go Green ? text by The Germinators
For students and teachers, green schools mean reduced incidence of asthma, decreased absenteeism, improved academic performance and increased
teacher satisfaction. For parents, green schools offer the confdence that comes with knowing their children spend their days in an environment that is both
healthy and conducive to learning. Numerous studies have demonstrated the signifcant quantitative benefts of green schools. One study
revealed a positive
correlation between green schools and lower operating costs and reduced adverse health effects. Findings show that green schools use an average of 33%
less energy, 32% less water, an average of 38.5% reduction in asthma, with an increase of less than 2% in initial building costs, while providing fnancial
benefts that are 20 times as large in the long run.
Another study
performed on behalf of the California Board for Energy Effciency involving more than 21,000 students showed a dramatic correlation
between daylit school environments and stronger student performance. These fndings demonstrate that daylighting techniques enable 20% faster progres-
sion in math, 26% faster progression in reading and views out of windows increased over-all academic performance by 5-10%.
In addition to a healthier indoor environment, increased academic performance, reduced adverse health effects, and lower operating expenses, green
schools are better for the environment. Green schools use less energy, less water, incorporate non-toxic materials, and can make positive contributions to the
local ecosystems. Green schools can also serve as a teaching instrument themselves, showcasing green technologies to students and local communities.
Building healthy high performance school buildings is now far more fscally prudent and less risky than building conventional, ineffcient and unhealthy
school buildings. By improving the learning environment and saving the school system money, green schools can improve the futures of thousands of students
while showing environmental leadership and fscal responsibility.
References: (1) Greening Americas Schools: Costs and Benefts. Gregory Kats, Capital E. (October 2006).
(2) Daylighting in Schools, Heschong Mahone Group. (August 1999)
This project was awarded Most Innovative
re-envisioning + transforming the california public schoolscape by April Allard, Peter Quintanilla, Noel MacNamee, Eefje Theeuws
- bring nature into the california public school experience
- create healthier, safer and more natural places for children to learn, grow and evolve
- introduce sustainable and regenerative practices, systems and technologies into all aspects of education
- save money while conserving non-renewable energy resources and reducing atmospheric emissions of pollutants and greenhouse gasses
- educate future generations through green building, living and learning
The Principles of Green Building Design
MPC INTD62 Spring Semester 2009
The Germinators (from left) April Allard, Peter
Quintanilla, Noel MacNamee, Eefje Theeuws
grid-tied photo voltaic solar array reduces
dependency/spending on municipal energy
green roof reduces energy use, provides
habitat for wildlife, increases lifespan of roof, in-
creases on-site water retention
occupancy sensors & programmable ther-
mostats regulate lights and heating when
room is actually occupied, reduces energy use
rainwater catchment reduce municipal wa-
ter supply cost by using rainwater in landscap-
ing and for toilet water, cleans water before
recharging groundwater
graywater recycling reduces cost of munici-
pal water supply, reduces need for energy and
chemicals to treat water, recharges groundwa-
ter and reclaims otherwise lost nutrients
regenerative landscaping native and edible
plants provide form and function in landscape
while reducing use and cost of water
community development creates opportu-
nities for greater community involvement, sus-
tainable campus becomes a tool for illustrating
sustainable living incorporated into daily lives.
rammed earth construction natural ma-
terials, with absorbent thermal mass natu-
rally release days heat when internal tem-
perature decreases
breathing walls 50% recycled content,
PEFC certifed wood with eco-friendly fn-
ish integrates outdoor space with internal
learning space, enhances acoustic quality
and improves air quality
recycled materials giving new life to old
things (fooring, furniture) promotes a
healthy learning environment while con-
serving non-renewable resources
This project was awarded Most Sustainable
Tularcitos Elementary School, located in Carmel Valley, currently needs to replace two temporary portable buildings with a new permanent structure that is ecologically friendly, safe, and
capable of providing an interactive environment for the children. Principal Karen Camilli suggested that the structure be designed for students in grades 3 - 5 with approximately 30 to 35
students from seven to ten years old. According to elementary school teacher Stacy Williams the room should be interactive because children learn best when they can see and touch
what they are learning about. Having the kids at their desks for the whole school day is not the best way to facilitate learning. Active children get dirty so a sink with a water fountain is a
necessity. Separate areas for different activities can also aid in learning.
Maintaining a good temperature in the portable has really been challenging. It is too cold in the morning then sometimes stuffy and hot in the afternoon. The air blown in by the
heater really causes problems for some of the students with allergies. Fresh air in the room is a necessity but often the windows of the portables do not open.
Our green building designs will include strawbale construction with oriented strand board decking, a fy-ash cement foundation, a living roof and wall, a water catchment system,
radiant heating, recyclable eco-solution carpet tiles, low VOC paint, LED lighting, recycled wood furniture, recycled glass tile, natural ventilation systems, and a water feature.
Straw bales will be obtained locally and built into the structure as a non-load bearing system. A steel post and wooden beam structure made of FCS lumber will support the living
roof. Eight foot long photovoltaic solar panels are to be located on top of the trellis offering additional energy savings from a natural source. The frame will bear the weight of the roof and
the straw will provide insulation. This technique is also called the in-fll method. Straw bale construction offers numerous benefts including energy effciency, reduction of wood consump-
tion, cost benefts, demonstrating alternative building methods to children, utilizing otherwise wasted material. By acquiring building materials locally we will minimize pollution caused by
modes of transportation. Also, considering the climate at Tularcitos School, hay bale walls coated with earth plaster are durable and rarely have problems with mold and mildew. Photo
voltaic panels will offer additional energy savings from a natural source. The children will enjoy viewing the hay bale construction through a truth window.
Living Roof
A living roof will adorn the top of the edifce. The roof will be insulated with 12 of soy-based foam insulation. The roof structure will consist of 3 X 6 Douglas Fur T & G over a
glue-lam system in order to meet roof load requirements. Carrot, Yarrow and native species and succulents will be utilized on the roof to support native wildlife and reduce demands for
water and plant food required for exotic species of plants. Green roofs provide signifcant energy savings, particularly during the summer cooling season. The living roof will require a soil
depth of 5 to 6. Tularcitos School can expect a 25% reduction in air conditioning. energy use during the hot summer months. The lifetime of the roof can be extended by 200% to 300%
by protecting it from UV rays. A living roof can be installed in just a few days. It will be aesthetically pleasing and will reduce storm water runoff.
Tularcitos Eco-Learning Lab - Interactive Education
Teaching Our Children Ecological Values in a Healthy Environment by Chelsea Frost Williams, Bob Nelson, Paris Vogelpohl, Michael Lapin
Mission: To create an interactive learn-
ing environment that demonstrates envi-
ronmental responsibility while providing
a comfortable place to learn and teach.
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009

Indoor Living Wall

The indoor living wall will be made from ICF construction flled with fy ash cement and will offer a beautiful inter-
active element for the children to experiment and learn about vegetation. It will also enhance air quality. Living wall plants
will include spider plants and philodendrons at the base of the wall and geraniums, hibiscus, fuchsia and ivies higher up on the
Underground rainwater tanks will catch water from the roof and the ground which can be used to supply water
for the classroom sink and garden. The tanks and living roof will help facilitate the elimination of storm water runoff into city
drainage systems. The water will pass through an extensive fltering system and a pump and pressure regulator will monitor
water levels. In the event of a power outage or insuffcient water supply, the system automatically diverts to the schools main
water system.
An interactive water feature will operate in the classroom providing a hands on learning tool for the students,
psychological benefts and a much needed break from traditional desk education. The children will gain knowledge about how
to conserve water through the use of this system.
The building will be heated by a radiant heating system. The water will be heated in a boiler and transported
through pipes into the foor, releasing heat into the room. Benefts of this system include reduction in indoor air pollution
(forced-air heating systems blow dust into the air).
Carpet, Paint and Tiles
Designweave EcoWorx Carpet Tiles were selected for the classroom. The carpet tiles are a great option for a
school environment because they are very durable and it is easy to replace stained sections. Designweave EcoWorx Tiles
contain 25% recycled materials and once you are ready to replace the product the carpet can be recycled into more Eco-
Worx carpet. EcoWorx carpet has received the 2003 Presidential Green Chemistry Award from the Environmental Protec-
tion Agency, is also a Silver certifed product under MBDCs Cradle-to-Cradle program, and contributes to an Innovation in
Design point for LEED, the US Green Building Councils rating system.
Benjamin Moore Nature Paints were chosen to paint the South interior wall in Tulle, Glass Slipper for the remaining
three walls and Pearlescent White for the ceiling and trim. These paints have zero volatile organic compounds in an odorless
formula. Families can be assured of the safety of their children. The formula has superb adhesion and is extremely durable.
For around the sink and water feature Sandhill Industries Recycled Tile was selected. When young people are
dealing with water messes can quickly happen. It is essential to have waterproof tile around running water in a classroom
as water can quickly cause damage to a building. Sandhill Industries creates their tile from 100% postindustrial glass. Their
recycled glass tile uses half the energy that it takes to produce a ceramic tile and less than a quarter of the energy it takes to
produce a cast glass tile. Sandhill has received the SPA Evergreen award for their environmental excellence and leadership.
Ventilation and Lighting
Plenty of ambient light will enter the building through clerestory windows, awning windows, and French doors. All
windows are fully operable creating cross air circulation throughout the structure and reducing indoor air pollution. Occu-
pants will also enjoy frst-rate ventilation with the implementation of a ceiling fan. LED lighting will be employed in the build-
ing design for recessed adjustable fxtures, reading lamps, and exterior lighting. LED lighting is highly effcient and will result
in signifcant savings. LEDs have a projected service life of about 100,000 hours. They are also available in a wide range of
The living roof, living wall, and water feature will make the classroom come to life. The students will not only learn
about nature but they will be able to see it before their eyes. Students will begin to look beyond recycling only cans and
bottles and begin to think of other creative options to conserve resources.
Chelsea Frost Williams stud-
ied International Relations and
Spanish at Lehigh University. After
graduation she began working at
Jordan Design Crew and started
taking design classes at Monterey
Peninsula College. In fall of 2009,
she will begin her Masters of Fine
Arts at the Academy of Art in San
Michael Lapin graduated from
U.C. Berkeley in 1972 . He taught
at Canada Jr. College in Redwood
City, Ca. and apprenticed as a ships
carpenter for three years. He has
been licensed as a general building
contractor for the past twenty-
nine years. Michael designed and
built his own home, shop, and
decks in Carmel Valley, Ca. while
working on many other projects
including residential and commer-
cial design and cabinetry.
Bob Nelson is a Building Con-
tractor (License # 768423) in the
Monterey area.
Paris Vogelpohl is an Interior
Design Student at MPC. From
1997 - 2009 she worked as a Mar-
keting Financial Analyst for CTB
McGraw-Hill. She earned a Bach-
elor of Science in business and
marketing. Since January 2009 she
has worked as an interior design
intern at Kremer Design Group.
This project was awarded the Audience Award
The Mobile Study Center is designed for a group of
kids whose parents are migrant farm workers. During
the summer and fall these students attend the South-
side Elementary School in Hollister Ca. In the winter
and spring the students move to Yuma, Arizona. The
Mobile Study Center is designed to travel with them.
Comments by the Judges:
Specifc need addressed. This helps tie down the
design and make it concretely specifc in form. Very
Good. Polly Osborne, AIA, LEED AP
Good Explanation of the why behind your proj-
ect. Great thought behind your sustainable as-
pects - light and air. You made it as realistic as pos-
sible. Very well researched and your research was
apparent. Well organized, easy to follow thought
pattern. Sunshine Giesler, MPC, Department
Chair, Family and Consumer Science; Coordinator,
MPC Interior Design Program
Excellent feasibility study, concept follow through
and presentation. Niklas Spitz, Executive Director,
EcoLogic Design Lab
Most workable, fairly good presentation but needs
more invention and fun. Christopher Williams,
Great name Left Field Design. Very practical if not
totally beautiful, great art work and solid research.
Good situational match. Laura Strohm, PhD.
Mobile Study Center for Southside Elementary School Hollister, Ca.
by Left Field Design: Rmi Webster and Nancy Lombard-Gay
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
Rmi Webster (left) has been drawing
since she could wrap her chubby little fst
around a crayon, and will continue to do
so until the undertaker pries the stylus out
of her fngers. She is currently a General
Ed major at MPC, because she has not yet
decided what she wants to be when she
grows up.
Nancy Lombard-Gay (right) is an Interior
Design student at Monterey Peninsula Col-
lege - a signifcant new direction after 20
years in the computer industry as a pro-
grammer, instructor, and all-around tech
support professional.
Nancy and Rmi met in a Drafting class
when Nancy had a panic attack over two-
point perspective. Shes much calmer now,
and they have been collaborating on proj-
ects ever since.
Team Portrait by Rmi Webster
This project was awarded Best Presentation
The portable Sustainable Swing Space for Monterey Peninsula College will function as a temporary
solution for transitioning departments while at the same time inspiring students and faculty with its ho-
listic approach to design and minimizing impact on the environment.
SIPs (Structured Insulated Panels) are used in the walls of the structure. They are made of an
inner core of rigid insulation, sandwiched between two wood pulp panels made from fast growing soft-
wood trees. SIPs provide 23 times the strength of conventional wall framing, use 35% less wood, and
reduce energy costs by about 60% while being highly termite and fre resistant.
EcoRock drywall is used in place of conventional gypsum drywall. It uses 80% less energy to
produce, is made of 80% post-industrial recycled waste, and is designed to be fully reutilized at end of life.
EcoClad is a bio-composite exterior cladding material composed of FSC certifed fber that is a
50/50 blend of bamboo and post-consumer recycled paper and is VOC and benzene free.
by Hana Nishiguchi and Hugo Perez
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62
Sustainable Swing Space
The building is made up of 3 modules of 12
x 40, which combine to a 36 x 40 structure.
We wanted to take into consideration the
concerns of the staff in the Support Services
Department and incorporate that input into
our design.
Soundproofng and acoustic qual-
ity were the primary concerns for all of the
staff, therefore we designed the movable of-
fce partitions to account for that.
The issue of lighting is addressed
in our design by providing plenty of natural
light, using light shelves to minimize glare and
maximize refective light, and installing task
lighting in work areas. This allows individuals
to use lighting only as needed and reduces
the number of overhead fxtures needed.
Air quality is enhanced by installing
operable windows for cross ventilation, using
an energy effcient heat/air pump and low
VOC materials and furnishings.
Specifc indoor plants that are
known for their removal of chemical toxins
in the air have been placed throughout the
building, dramatically improving not only the
air quality, but the overall look and feel of the
To offset most, if not all, of the build-
ings energy usage, photovoltaic laminate
modules are installed on the curved standing
seam roof, which is constructed of recycled
This project aims to create a highly
effcient building that utilizes natural day-
lighting, provides good air quality, and uses
recycled materials in the building structure
and furnishings.
The focus for the Future Center design at Monterey Peninsula College is to create a small functional space that would provide a peaceful
sanctuary for students and community to access. Future center seeks to promote a sustainable living design and main goals include creating a
comfortable environment, provide and enhance biodiversity, and to be imaginative and inspire.
Future Center
by Bodhi Kvenild and Mio Fukushima
Bodhi Kvenild and Mio Fukushima presented the most diverse
material and formal investigations of their tea house meditation
space called Future Center.
Carmel Valley High School Ecological Learning Classroom
by Nico Rivetti, Boj Tepenelenov, Roy Clark
(from left) Nico Rivetti, Boj Tepenelenov, Roy Clark
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
Sula Nichols designs a participatory strawbale yurt
with integrated pond, hot tub, and pizza oven for Pa-
cifc Valley School where she was on the school board
for many years. Sula is a resident of Big Sur currently
rebuilding her house since it was destroyed by the Big
Sur Basin Complex wild fres in 2008.
Pacifc Valley School Energy Harvesting Center by Sula Nichols
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
Polly Osborne, AIA, LEED AP
An architects job is to change the environment; therefore they have a specifc responsibility to respect it. Polly
Osborne, the principal of Polly Osborne Architects, focuses on site-specifc, green architecture, her roots being in the
environmental design movement in California. She has been in private practice since 1987. Her architectural career
began in 1977 when she went to work for Ray Rector in Napa Valley, California. While working for Rector, she gained
knowledge of adobe, earth-sheltered, and rammed earth as well as conventional design and construction methods. She
earned a Masters of Architecture at Southern California Institute of Architecture. Polly Osborne has been published
in many magazines and newspapers, and the books Designing with Spirituality, West Coast Rooms, and Outdoor Rooms.
Her designs have won awards from the American Institute of Architects and sustainable design organizations. She is
a member of the AIA Committee on the Environment, the USGBC and the Society for Architectural Historians. She
has lectured, or guest critiqued, at Southern California Institute of Architecture, California Polytechnic Institute, Build it
Green, Southern California Gas Company Energy Center, Eco Expo, University of Calgary and Occidental Collage. Polly
is also a fne artist, working mainly in watercolor. Her painting series on the 911 tragedy is in the Yale Medical Library
Permanent Collection. Pollys work can be found on
Christopher Williams - Architypes - Architecture, Industrial Design, Design Theory, Indigenous Design, Form and Function
Christopher was educated at Pratt Institute, Brooklyn N.Y. , the New School for Social Research, N.Y.; Antioch Col-
lege, the Union Graduate School, Ohio, and the University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany. He has taught at UCLA,
Los Angeles, CA., Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y. , Southern California Institute of Architecture, Santa Monica, Ca., the
University of Alberta, Alberta, Canada, and the Cleveland Art Institute, Cleveland, Ohio. His practise focuses on residential
architecture in California, New York, Maine, and Canada and his publications include Origins Of
Form: The Shape Of Natural And Man Made Things published by the Architectural Book Publish-
ing Company (1994) and Craftsmen of Necessity, published by Vintage Books (1974) as well as
numerous magazine articles on architecture and design.
Ken Principe, Landscape Architect
Ken Principe has gained, in his thirty years of experience working in horticulture, civil engineering, surveying,
GIS, and landscape architecture, a deep understanding of the need for environmental sustainability in planning, design,
construction and maintenance of constructed landscapes. While working in various corporate design frms throughout
California he has always strived to bring innovative ideas and technical BMPs to his projects.
Final Review Panel of Judges

Laura A. Strohm, Ph.D.
Prof. Laura Strohm founded The Sustainability Academy in 2005 at
Monterey, California. This public beneft (501c3) organization brings
experts together to work on applied sustainability challenges on the
California Central Coast. The mission of this think-do-teach tank is
to accelerate the mainstream practice of innovative solutions for eco-
nomic success, ecological health, and community beneft. Experience-
based education about sustainability is the organizations core busi-
Dr. Strohm taught International Environmental Policy (IEP) at the
Monterey Institute of International Studies for 12 years. She designed
the curriculum for the graduate program in IEP, a dual degree in busi-
ness and environment, and special career training in that feld. She has authored articles on the international
waste trade, trade and environment, and comparative environmental policy. Previous academic appoint-
ments include the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University, Harvard, UCLA, and the
International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in Geneva, Switzerland.
Before taking her graduate degree (Ph.D.) at the Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy in Boston in
1991, she worked for both the County of Santa Cruz and the US Soil Conservation Service in watershed
management and soil conservation in California. That work encompassed environmental planning, regula-
tory enforcement, and community education.
Sunshine Giesler, MPC Department Chair, Family and Consumer
Sciences; Coordinator, Interior Design Program, MPC
Sunshine Christensen Giesler is a relative newcomer to the green building
feld as well as Monterey Peninsula College. She joined MPC in August of 2008 as
the Interior Design Program Coordinator/Instructor and is pleased to be working
on the greening of a program so integral to the local economy.
Prior to moving to Monterey, Sunshine lived in Spokane, WA while working
on her Masters of Interior Design at the Interdisciplinary Design Institute of Wash-
ington State University. While at the Institute, she worked collaboratively with
architects and landscape architects on numerous sustainable projects and compe-
titions and has witnessed frsthand how important education is to the movement.

Final Review Panel of Judges continued

The buffet (right) at the fnal review sponsored by MPC Biodegradable
cutlery and paper products sponsored by Passion Purveyors.

The Principles of Green Building Design

Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
Thomas W. Rettenwender, M.A., Mag. Arch., LEED AP, Architect
Thomas is co-founder of the Ecological Design Lab, an architectural design and research
frm, and President of Realitree: Ecology and Architecture, a 501(c)3 non-proft organization
with offces in Santa Cruz and Monterey. He is adjunct professor at the Monterey Peninsula
College and University of California, Santa Cruz, teaching the course titled Green Building De-
sign. His educational background is in Philosophy and Mathematics (B.A. Trinity College, Dublin,
Ireland), Philosophy (M.A. Trinity College, Dublin) and Architecture (Mag. Arch., University of Ap-
plied Arts, Vienna, Austria and SCIArc, Los Angeles, California). He has studied with internation-
ally renowned architects Zaha Hadid, Wolf D. Prix, Lebbeus Woods and Greg Lynn. Thomas is a
licensed Architect and a LEED AP (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Accredited
Professionally, he focuses on incorporating an ecological approach to architectural design,
achieved through a thorough study of the existing site ecology, an analysis of ecological functions
being performed on the site, and ultimately a translation of these functions into architecture.
Thomas apprenticed with Big Sur architect Mickey Muennig from 2003-06, was the resi-
dent architect at Rana Creek Habitat Restoration from 2006-08, and has practiced architecture
in Frankfurt, Vienna, Beijing, Big Sur, Monterey, and Los Angeles. His professional work includes
design of the Monterey Bay Shores Ecoresort, Google Living Architecture Analysis, Redwood
Gateway Interpretive Center, Slotover Residence, Bonny Doon, and the Wavecrest Ecology
Education Center, Halfmoon Bay, Ca..
Niklas Spitz, Executive Director, Ecologic Design Lab
Niklas is Executive Director and co-founder of the EcoLogic Design Lab along with
other landscape and graphic design companies in England and Spain. Niklas is acting assistant to
Thomas Rettenwender at MPC and UC Santa Cruz.
His background education is in Building (HND, H&WL College, London), Architectural
Conservation (Post Grad Dipl., Architectural Association, London) and he apprenticed with John
Davies and Associates Landscape Architects, London in the early 80s.
Niklas says his objective is to be an effective part of the solution in a world gone quite
mad, by contributing functional beauty and interconnectedness wherever possible.
Course Instructors
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Monterey Bay Shores Ecoresort
designed by Thomas Rettenwender and Brent Bucknum for Rana Creek Habitat Restoration and BSA Architects.
The degraded site is restored with living architecture that covers 90% of the site with native fora and fauna, captures 100% of the stormwater and reduces the
potable water usage by 50%. With daylighting techniques and passiv solar design the design reduces fossil fuel use by an estimated 53%.
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The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
The Google Living Architecture Analysis
by Brent Bucknum, Thomas Rettenwender, and Kirstin Weeks for Rana Creek Habitat Restoration and William McDonough + Partners.
This Pre-design Building Systems Research analysis lays out a pattern language - a categorical illustration and defnition of living architecture techniques. This 15
page study serves as a pre-programming study for the planned expansion of the Google Campus in Mountainview, Ca. This study was part of a 170 page docu-
ment that outlines the current state of the art of Green Building Design.
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Redwood Gateway Interpretive Center
designed by Thomas Rettenwender for Save the Redwoods League in consultation with Prof. Greg Lynn, University of Applied Arts, Vienna and Prof. Stephen Sillett, Humboldt State University.
This design suspends lightweight volumes and a looping canopy walkway up to 100 feet above the forest foor to house an interpretive center where
visitors can experience frst hand what it feels like to be part of the redwood canopy at the Hartsook Inn site in Humboldt County, California.
The Principles of Green Building Design
Monterey Peninsula College INTD62 Spring 2009
Wavecrest Ecology Education Center - Halfmoon Bay
designed by Mickey Muennig and Thomas Rettenwender
The client came in to the offce with a copy of Surfer magazine and said
This is our chance to build the breaking wave ! The design follows a
fuid grid that undulates through the landscape and lifts like waves to
house an educational landscape and student overnight facilities over-
looking Mavericks - the world famous surfng destination.
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Solar ARC Dubai - International Competition Entry
by Thomas Rettenwender, Constantine Papachristopulous, Brent Bucknum, Niklas Spitz
This landmark tower is designed to serves as a large solar collector that is in-
tegrated into the form and structure of the building and produces 200% of the
energy it requires. The tower also serves as a public spa and conference center.
Diagram showing the generation of the form
with a hyperbolic solar section
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Guest Speakers
Joe Rigney - Joe is the owner of Toyon Consultants, an environmental consulting frm based in Santa Cruz. His pre-
sentation to the class provided the environmental context for the multitude of permits required for construc-
tion projects in California and showed how some of the current trends in living archetecture might be used to
overcome permitting issues and help reintegrate humanity back into the natural world.
Libby Barnes, Architect, LEED AP - Libby received her Masters in Architecture from Parsons School of Design and
moved to Carmel, CA in 2003 taking a job with a local frm specializing in sustainable residential design and land
use planning. Since coming to Carmel she has joined the US Green Building Council Monterey Bay and serves
on the USGBC MBB advocacy team encouraging local municipalities to adopt green building ordinances. Libby is
also an active member of the AIA of Monterey Bay.
Brent Bucknum - Brent is founder of the Hyphae Design Laboratory, an ecological engineering, research and design
frm dedicated to bridging the gap between innovative architecture and hard biological sciences. Brent is also a
regular collaborator of Greenmeme, a public art frm based in Los Angeles and is co-director of Urban Bioflter,
a west oakland greenbelt project of the Earth Island Institute. From 2005-2008, Brent helped launch the Living
Architecture department at Rana Creek Habitat Restoration based in Carmel Valley, California.
Marisha Farnsworth - Marisha Farnsworth teaches ecological building at Merritt College in Oakland, CA and works
with students to design and build small structures made of earth, straw, bamboo and recycled materials. In addi-
tion to co-founding The Natural Builders, a contracting company based in the East Bay, Marisha has conducted
research and design and has worked with organizations including Builders Without Borders, Architecture for
Humanity, and Kleiwerks International. She is currently co-directing Urban Bioflter, a bourgeoning non-proft
that designs, implements and advocates for green infrastructure in environmentally degraded urban communities.
Farrel Williams - Farrel is a solar energy designer and specializes in commercial and residential off-grid power sys-
tems. He has10 years of off-grid installation experience. His frm Apex Solar sells components as well as fully
integrated energy systems based on solar, wind, hydro, backup generators and batteries throughout the USA,
Canada and Mexico.
David Messmer, P.E. - David is Principal at Messmer & Associates and has been practising engineering in the Mon-
terey Bay area for over 30 years He has worked on landmark projects such as the Esalen Baths and the Post
Ranch Inn.
Ken Principe - Landscape Architect (see Judges p. 25)
Cooper Scollan - Cooper has been in the landscape/nursery industry for over 19 years and currently works for
a local landscape design/build company called Habitat Gardens. Habitat Gardens designs and builds landscapes,
hardscapes, living walls and roofs, focusing on an ecologically minded approach using sustainable materials and
California native plants as much as possible.
Tanja Roos - Tanja is Organic Garden Program Director/Teacher at the Hilton Bialek Habitat, an independent
501(c)3 non-proft organization, a unique community resource in the central coast region that inspires students
of all ages, to understand, appreciate and protect the natural environment. With the imminent ground breaking
of the Habitats LEED certifed classroom, the opportunities for experiential learning will be increased many fold.
To learn more, volunteer or make a tax deductible donation visit:
A special thanks to Susan J. Retten for her editing and proof reading services.
Publication graphic design and layout by Thomas Rettenwender and Niklas Spitz of
Thank You !
We want to thank Mary Nelson, Sunshine
Giesler, Melissa Pickford, Gail Fail, Julie Bailey,
Jeremy Hertzberg, Dustin Connor and the
entire MPC Faculty and Staff for their support
in getting the Principles of Green Building
Design course established. We would also like
to thank the Bay Area Career Pathways Alliance
for providing the support to design and print
this publication.
printed on 100% recycled paper
Thomas Rettenwender +1 (831) 920-8333
Niklas Spitz +1 (831) 626-1685
37825 Palo Colorado Road
Carmel, CA 93923 USA
i nf o@EcoLogi cDes i gnLab. com
Green Building Design and Development
Photo: Participants of the MPC Green Buidling Design course,
Spring 2009, study the upcoming LEED certifed classroom
building at the Carmel Middle School Habitat with Tanja Roos.
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